Power In Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf

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The notion of “power play” denotes the manipulation and exploitation of control over individuals or groups of people in order to gain an advantage. Power in literature can be orchestrated in various forms, including: Sexual, Verbal and Emotional. This is evidently demonstrated in Edward Albee’s play, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” (1962), Albee explores the power dynamic among two couples George & Martha and Nick & Honey. Through the characters the composer demonstrates the constant struggle for power thus resulting in the humiliation and the shattering facade of each character. The composer investigates the themes of reality vs. illusions and Games and war/ manipulation to portray the imbalanced nature of power shifts among a group of people. The dichotomy of reality vs. illusions reveals the delusional…show more content…
Games such as “Get the guest”, “hump the host”, “humiliate the host” revolves around their most private emotions. This further emphasizes George and Martha power struggles, as the emotionally detrimental role of George as the ringmaster supports this. This conveys that their marriage has turned to a routine, emphasized through their verbal mockery. Like, “It isn't the prettiest spectacle…seeing a couple of middle-aged types hacking away at each other, all red in the face and winded, missing half the time.” The use of “hacking away” depicts a grotesque imagery of their banter. This divulges that both George and Martha are dedicated to destroying one another, that there has to be a winner among them. Ultimately this goes to George as he exposes the truth of their “son”. The use of sexuality aids in Martha’s battle for power, the character’s attraction Nick is ultimately used as a weapon against George, both characters go to extents in order to gain dominance over one another. However both Nick and Honey are used as pawns in their “power play” for

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